Word Count: 816
Notes: Post Duel Monsters
Disclaimer: I own nothing in connection with YuGiOh, nor do I make any money writing this fanfiction.
Mai had done a fair bit of travelling in her time, but most of it was as a card dealer on cruise ships so most of what she saw were the lavishly decorated rooms, one tailored suit after another, dresses which flashed some flesh but still left the imagination running wild and the ocean as it continued to pass the window. Whenever the cruise ship docked, she would sometimes be able to go out, spending most of her wages on clothes and any pretty things which may catch her eye. Sometimes she would have to stay working or sometimes she would just go back to her room and catch up on her sleep.
She was travelling again, which wasn't really anything new in her life. It wasn't while she was making money, which was a change to how things often were when she was on the road. The biggest difference was that she wasn't alone. Vivian had been an absolute lifesaver during her travels across China in just about everything from what the culture was like, to what was good to eat, to teaching her how to effectively haggle, to getting them very temporary jobs to help pay their way as they went. Mai had never travelled with anybody before and it was a bit of a surprise when she found she wasn't reluctant to do so. Vivian was loud, energetic and cheerful, which Mai wouldn't have been able to stand at one time. Now she found it kept her spirits up.
The Chinese wilderness, although beautiful, was very hilly at times. While going what sometimes seemed to be constantly up and down, Mai would try to keep telling herself it was doing her physique a world of good. The hills were also why she supposed she couldn't get a signal on her mobile phone. At first it had been a severe annoyance and she had come to realise just how much she relied upon it. At around the same time she had come to realise the lack of electrical sockets, so kept her phone switched off and in her pocket. Sometimes as she sat and watched the night creep in or listened to Vivian telling her about her grandparents, amongst many other things, Mai would keep her hand in the same pocket as her mobile phone, toying with the two small charms attached to it which depicted the Black Magician Girl and the Harpy Lady.
Where they slept was often an uncertainty, usually decided an hour or so before sunset. If there was an inn or a hotel or something similar nearby which they could afford, they would. But they also carried around small tents, the kind which could be put up within a few moments, just in case. As she lay in bed, whether it be a proper one with clean sheets and a pillow or a sleeping bag, Mai would take out her phone and switch it on, only for a few moments. All she wanted to do was look at the photograph which she had set up as her background. It was taken when Anzu had managed to drag her out to Domino's shopping centre with Yugi, Honda and Jounouchi. Mai had spotted the photograph on Anzu's pin board, the one of the four of them smiling while holding their fingers in a V gesture. She commented on how she thought it looked nice and since then Anzu was instant upon taking her out to do another group photograph with her in it.
Somehow they all managed to squeeze into the small photo booth and genuinely smiled through the feeling of slightly-crushed ribs and hot oxygen. Considering Honda and Jounouchi were half hanging out of the booth, they fell out right away while the machine whirred and the photographs were developed. As Yugi slipped out as well, Mai reached into her pocket and took out her phone. She had recently had the Black Magician Girl charm added to it along with the Harpy Lady. Mai was quick with her fingers so she took Anzu by the shoulder and turned her around. There was a soft mechanical click from the phone and before Anzu could finish her quick cry of surprise the photograph of Mai kissing her cheek loaded on the screen.
"Don't worry," Mai told her with a wink as she saved the photograph and set it up as her background. "Our secret, right?"
She had sent the photograph to Anzu some time after that. As Mai travelled China, she kept up her routine of looking at the photograph for just a few moments every night. Sometimes she would find a message from Anzu waiting for her:
MAI, WHEN WILL YOU COME BACK? - A 3
Mai's message back was always the same.
A, DON'T KNOW. WAIT FOR ME, K? - M.
Angel, when I can be someone we're both proud of.